Former England skipper Nasser Hussain has recalled the hilarious moment he forgot Graeme Smith’s name during the famous 2003 series.
Speaking on the Sky Sports Cricket Podcast, Hussain spoke about the day he confused the former South African captain for a local Nottinghamshire player during a media briefing in South Africa’s tour to England.
‘I was at Trent Bridge and I was working for Sky, one of my first gigs actually. And some of the Sunday newspaper guys were there and they said: ‘Nas, Nas! Can I have a word with you, you’re the captain’, and they got me into this little room and they said, ‘What about their captain?’, and there was a lad playing for Notts at that stage called Greg Smith,’ said Hussain.
‘Yeah, Greg…Graeme…what’s-his-name, is a very fine leader’ and the next day’s headline was ‘You forgot his name’ and then he got 250 in the first Test match and the headline in the paper was ‘You know his name now, Nas’.
‘I might have forgotten his name. Very good player.’
It turned out to be Hussain’s final series as captain of the England Test team, while Smith, who had only just replaced Shaun Pollock as the new Proteas skipper, had a series worth remembering.
The opening batsman broke the then record for the highest ever score in Test cricket by a South African player when he struck 277 in the first encounter at Edgbaston and followed that up with another double ton in the second Test at Lord’s.
Former English batsman Rob Key also reminded Hussain on the podcast that it wasn’t the first time he encountered misfortunes at the hands of Smith after Hussain dropped him at point during that second match at Lord’s, which Smith fully capitalised on.
‘Don’t think we have to go through every one of my misdemeanours in this,’ Hussain joked.
‘Yeah, I dropped him at Lord’s. I’m sure that will make the footage of this, he was on 7 or 8 and he made another 250-260. Thanks for bringing it up, Rob. You were playing for Kent U19s at that stage when we were doing that.’
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